Image: GOP Overhauls Polling Operations

U.S. Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Oklahoma, was one of a few mostly moderate senators invited to an exclusive dinner with President Obama Wednesday night.(AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki)

GOP Overhauls Polling Operations

Monday, 11 Mar 2013 11:42 AM

By Lisa Barron

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The Republican Party is taking concrete steps to fix its polling procedures after it was blindsided by the outcome of the 2012 presidential election.

The National Republican Congressional Committee has organized a series of meetings and conference calls for its top pollsters after GOP strategists acknowledged that much of their 2012 survey data was based on false assumptions, reports Politico.

The NRCC has reportedly formed a new Strategy Department to better project the precise composition of the electorate in several dozen districts that will be critical to determining control of the House in next year's 2014 mid-term elections. The GOP now maintains a 17-seat majority.

Liesl Hickey, the executive director of the NRCC, told Politico that the campaign organization is “modeling and analyzing districts like we never have before” and working closely with polling outfits to “make sure our data and research is precise.”

The new division, headed by former regional political director John Rogers, will engage with the major Republican polling firms, including McLaughlin & Associates, the Tarrance Group, American Viewpoint, North Star Opinion Research, and Public Opinion Strategies, which polled for Mitt Romney’s 2012 presidential campaign, according to Politico.

Among the new strategies and practices: Pollsters will be expected to have at least 30 percent of their samples made up of cell phone users in order to include younger voters, and in districts with large Hispanic populations, campaigns will be urged to set up Spanish-language call centers.

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